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posts for 2009. (page 2.)

last week, i was in the black forest for three days, staying in a wonderful and quiet place called maierhof.


i travelled by train to oppenau, where i was collected by car. here’s a view from the station in oppenau:

on the first evening i did a small tour. after a very short time i met a cat sitting on a bench:

here are some impressions from the trip:


on tuesday, i planned to visit the all saints waterfalls. i first did a longer walk:

then, i got there:

the waterfalls remind me a bit of the sundance canyon which i visited last year:

finally, a view on the all saints’ abbey:


on wednesday, i went on a trip to oppenau:

there, i got a piece of strawberry cake with hot chocolate:

on the way back, i found a really beautiful place:

the second-last photo shows the maierhof. later, in the evening, i went on a second trip, and found this view in a forest:

today, we had our conference dinner at an italian restaurant called l’espresso. the atmosphere was nice and the food was good, and after the dessert espresso, coffee or cappuccino was served. i asked for hot chocolate itself, and the waiter said he has to check whether that is ok, since they use high quality chocolate which is a bit more expensive. that already sounded good, so i told him in case of doubt i’d pay for that one myself. some minutes later, i got my chocolate (without having to pay for it), and i must say, it’s the best hot chocolate i ever had. i guess it was made in a similar manner to the one i once produced myself. if i ever come back to toronto, i have to get back to this place :)

i’m currently staying in toronto, attending a conference at the fields institute. today’s afternoon was free, so i did a trip to the toronto islands. here are some impressions from the trip:

finally, a photo of myself, taken at the beach of ward’s island.

on december 8, 2008, i did another trip which i never wrote about so far. this time, i visited switzerland’s jungfraujoch, featuring europe’s highest train station at 3.454 meters above sea level. i did that trip on a monday to avoid the hordes of tourists wich invade the jungfraujoch in particular on weekends.

eigernordwand station.

the first stop of the train inside the mountain is the eigernordwand station.

eismeer station.

the second stop of the train inside the mountain is the eismeer station, giving a wonderful view on the lower grindelwald glacier.

note that the windows were steamy, which adds a neat glow to the scenery:

the top of europe.

at the final station, jungfraujoch station, one enters a huge station. here are some views from one outside part of the station:

two panoramas; the first gives another view from the station, similar to the one above, and the second one shows in detail a metal rope which survived an ice storm:

art & ice.

inside the station, one can find several pieces of art, including an ice palace consisting completely of ice:

outside, again.

this time, on the other side of the station, where one can walk on snow:

another panoramic view:

the way back.

finally, some views from the trip back to zürich:

it appears that i forgot to document two trips i did last year, one in calgary at the end of may, and one at the beginning of december in switzerland.

the first one is a trip on may 31, 2008 to calgary’s nose hill park, a huge natural environment park depicting (if you ignore the roads and trails) the landscape which would be there if the city wouldn’t be there. enjoy some impressions. the last photo shows some rabbits in a street near to the place where i’ve been staying, which is maybe a 20 minute walk away from the park.

i finally started another project: a math blog. the aim of this one is to write about mathematical things which interest me, for example things related to my research. the formulae will be rendered with latex; mathml is simply unuseable so far.
an example post shows a feature with i added to my wp-latex enhancer plugin: (primitive) environments for definitions, theorems, proofs, etc., including a very basic labeling system allowing hyperlinks which jump to the right environment; for example, here’s a link to a lemma in the post. the post features my favorite proof of the fundamental theorem of algebra, using complex analysis.

posted in: computer math www

on saturday, i went for a small walk before going shopping, again to the confederation park in calgary. here are a few impressions.

sometimes, i like to cook fancy. with fancy, i mean something which needs a bit more work than just pasta with pesto. like what i ate today. here are two photos, showing everything except the ice cream afterwards, and the drink:

almost three weeks ago, while being in oldenburg, i visited the schlossgarten. a second time; the last time being around six months before. this time, several flowers started to flourish, turning the park into a colorful place, even though the part of the garden featuring the flowers i photographed last years was still deserted. enjoy some impressions.

i just read on spiegel online an article about britney spears leaving the stage for half an hour during a concert because of too much smoke (despite smoking being prohibited). in the beginning, the article seems to mock on her for this behaviour. i’m not a fan of mrs. spears, and she isn’t exactly an angel with respect to smoking herself, but this really makes me angry. smoky places are not just annoying, but unhealthy, and it far from funny being forced to stand smoke, in particular at concerts, as there is usually no choice of going to a “non smoking version” of the same concert. even worse, smoking is extremely bad for the singer’s voice. (okey, britney seems to do playback, but that’s not the point here.)
its really bad when at concerts which are declared as being smoke-free (mostly by law, it seems that most venue operators or bands don’t have the guts to enforce a smoking ban without being forced so by law – even though there are counterexamples, like die ärzte) someone decides that he can simply ignore this, and starts smoking. usually followed by several others doing the same. i hope that eventually times will come where the smoking bans are (more strictly) enforced, better sooner than later.
this has nothing to do with a lack of tolerance from the non-smoking side. don’t get me wrong: i don’t care (too much) what people do to themselves. but i do care what people do to me. (also see artica’s articles on the general subject.)